Australasian Science: Australia's authority on science since 1938

Twin engines of truth? How science and law interact to construct our world

By Lynne Haultain

Social science and legal scholar Prof Sheila Jasanoff discusses how science and the law interact or compete with one another in the formulation of public reason -- in the economy, the courts and the political landscape.

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

LYNNE HAULTAIN

Hi, I’m Lynne Haultain and welcome to Up Close. We talk about science as revealing and describing the immutable laws of nature, and the laws of men, the structures of our societies, and the frame through which we judge and rule. But what's the interplay between science and law? How do they influence each other and where and when do they compete or come into conflict? According to our guest in this episode, the relationship between them tests certainty, judgement, and progress in very revealing ways. Sheila Jasanoff is the Pforzheimer Professor of Science and Technology Studies at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, and a leading thinker and writer on science and law. She's in Melbourne as a guest of the Melbourne Law School. Sheila, welcome.

SHEILA JASANOFF

Thank you very much, Lynne. I'm happy to be here.

LYNNE HAULTAIN

Lovely to have you. Well, let's talk about this interplay between science and law. In a number of your writings, you have teased out a number of strands around this interplay. But let's talk about initially, the way in which science and law are characterised, and how they confer power and create influence both in...

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.